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Here's What Your Tweets Are Really Saying About Your Heart

First Posted: Jan 22, 2015 02:42 PM EST
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What are your tweets saying about your heart disease risk? Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania found that users who frequently used words like "hate" or expressed other negative emotions had a higher risk of cardiovascular issues. Those who also expressed boredom or having no reason to get out of bed were at a higher risk than counterparts.

Researchers found that Twitter data can actually be used to measure psychological and physiological well-being, overall.

"Psychological states have long been thought to have an effect on coronary heart disease," said Margaret Kern, an assistant professor at the University of Melbourne, Australia, in a news release. "For example, hostility and depression have been linked with heart disease at the individual level through biological effects," Kern added. "But negative emotions can also trigger behavioral and social responses; you are also more likely to drink, eat poorly and be isolated from other people which can indirectly lead to heart disease."

Whether you're using Twitter as a stream of consciousness or to write obscure jokes or regurgitated news headlines, science always seems to have a way of deciphering the underlying tone in your head.

"Twitter seems to capture a lot of the same information that you get from health and demographic indicators," concluded Gregory Park of the university. "But it also adds something extra. So predictions from Twitter can actually be more accurate than using a set of traditional variables."

More information regarding the findings can be seen via the journal Psychological Science.

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